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History of Censorship Presentation


Grade Levels:
8th Grade, 9th Grade, 10th Grade, 11th Grade and 12th Grade

Yes, all text is editable.

Teaching Duration:
1-2 class periods

View the FREE Preview!

This presentation is perfect for Banned Books Week or as an introduction to book burning in Ray Bradbury’s “Fahrenheit 451.” The slides give a brief history of nine censorship and book banning incidents in world history.

Discussing censorship can be controversial in certain settings. It’s why Banned Books Week exists – so we can talk about censorship. It is, however, critical that you know your audience and your community.

Please have a look at the Preview below before you buy to make sure this presentation will fit the needs of your school.

This product has 24 total slides and it includes:

  • 21-slide Lesson Presentation in Microsoft PowerPoint + Google Slides + PDF
    • All body text is editable; you choose which slides you want to use.
  • The Works Cited page appears on the final slide.
  • Google Classroom Basics (6 pages, PDF)
  • No lesson plan is included, but standards addressed by this activity are listed below.

Information about censorship includes:

  • What is censorship?
  • Who are the censors?
  • Common ways library books are censored (torn pages, drawing “clothes” over body parts, marking out words, etc.)
  • What is book banning?
  • What is book burning and how is it used symbolically?
  • Why are books censored and/or banned?
  • 9 historical censorship events (listed below)

9 book censorship events in history including:

  • 213 BC – China – Emperor Qin Shi Huang
  • 640 AD – Egypt – Caliph Omar burned all 200,000 volumes in the Library of Alexandria
  • 1497-98 – Florence, Italy – “The Bonfire of the Vanities”
  • 1600-1966 – The Index Librorum Prohibitorum – Catholic Church bans over 5200 books
  • 1616-1652 – Galileo Galilei convicted of heresy over heliocentric theory papers
  • 1859 – Charles Darwin’s “Origin of Species”
  • 1933 – Nazi book burnings
  • 1960s-1970s – Mao Zedong of China – Cultural Revolution
  • Today – “Great Firewall of China” and censorship of social media, newspapers, and books

Standards Addressed:

AASL National School Library Standards – See the AASL Standards Framework for Learners to view full text. 

  • Inquire – C.1. – D.1. – D.3.
  • Include – B.2. – C.1. – C.2. – D.1. – D.2. – D.3.

Common Core English Language Arts Standards –
© Copyright 2010 National Governors Association Center for Best Practices and Council of Chief State School Officers. All rights reserved.

  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.8.1. – CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.8.6.
  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.9-10.1. – CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.9-10.6.
  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.11-12.1. – CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.11-12.6.

Terms of Use
© Mrs. ReaderPants – By purchasing this product, you receive a one-user license. Copying or distributing to others is prohibited.  ​See our Site Terms of Use for more information. For teacher-librarians: You may use this product with all of your classes and students.

​Questions before buying?
​If the free preview file does not answer your question, you can contact us through ​​this link with questions.


Yes, all instructional materials are editable.

Grade Levels

8th Grade, 9th Grade, 10th Grade, 11th Grade, 12th Grade

Lesson Plan Included?


Teaching Duration

1 class period, 2 class periods


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